NEW YORK CITY-Published reports, borrowing Senator Chuck Schumer’s sentiment, “…there is a storm cloud on the horizon that could cause New York City to stagnate or even decline,” from a Jan. 20 speech, accuse the City of New York of not doing enough to ensure that the tightening of the market will not result in a mass exodus to the shores of New Jersey. Mayor Giuliani calls the reports, “unfair to the City of New York.”

“Though many are not aware of it yet, New York is about to enter into a space crises,” Schumer stated. “Manhattan is getting filled up. The lack of new parcels and the island’s density limit new construction as well. In the outer boroughs where there is the physical space to accommodate growth, the lack of critical mass owing to the dearth of large-scale private sector commercial development discourages new businesses from locating there. As a result, large numbers of jobs are starting to leave New York for New Jersey, Connecticut and beyond.”

But Giuliani, repsonding to the warning, urges naysayers to “do a little addition,” and find that New York far exceeds New Jersey in the amount of real estate currently available and under construction. He says the maximum development New Jersey’s shore could sustain is approximately 25.5 million sf, which is the total square footage of only three of New York’s new projects. “At 42nd St. there are five new buildings” at six million sf, “which more than exceeds what New Jersey has available currently,” he adds.He cites statistics that New York’s job growth is setting records, lists of new city development projects, and new private sector development such as the New York Stock Exchange building planned for 1.9 million sf.

The adequacy of space throughout the city is obvious, he says, from a “physical examination of the city–that means actually driving and walking the streets, not just sitting in an office building and thinking about it.”

A spokesperson for Senator Schumer’s office tells that Schumer is still concerned with ways to develop new physical buildings, to improve transportation to industrial and corporate parks in the outer boroughs, to create new infrastructures and to provide amenities. To address these issues, he has formed a public-private partnership of 35 members.

Members represent public agencies, such as Michael G. Carey, president of the NYC Economic Development Corp. The EDC’s Web site lists programs and incentives including the Industrial and Commercial Incentive Program. The site also lists the following city industrial parks with site maps: Bathgate In-Place, Zerega, Hunts Point In-Place, Port Morris In-Place, Bronx; East Brooklyn In-Place, East Williamsburg In-Place, Sunset Park In-Place, Brooklyn; and Jamaica In-Place, Long Island City In-Place and Queens.

Private members include presidents and CEOs of companies such as Empire State Development Corp., Newmark & Co. and Goldman Sachs.

One of the criticisms of the boroughs, according to the published reports and Schumer’s office, is a lack of adequate transportation. The MTA is not directly serving on the board of the partnership but has consulted indirectly on a preliminary report. The DOT, now headed by Schumer’s wife, Iris Weinshall, is also not directly involved, but should recommendations be made to change access ramps, etc., according to Schumer’s spokesperson, they will consult.

This preliminary report prepared by the members of the partnership is due to be issued next week, Sept. 25. will cover the findings.

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